Nate Diaz, Johny Hendricks Get Title Shots with Wins

UFC President Dana White said in today’s UFC on FOX 3 pre-fight presser, “If Diaz wins, he gets a title shot; if Miller wins, he is probably still a fight or two away.”

Nate Diaz dropped back down to lightweight from welterweight to be able to fight top names in the division.  He’s won both bouts he’s had since returning to the lightweight division.  He first took out Takanori Gomi via submission at UFC 135 and picked apart Donald Cerrone at UFC 141 to win by decison.  Jim Miller will be his 3rd fight since returning to lightweight.

Jim Miller had been on a streak, winning seven in a row before dropping a decision to Benson Henderson at UFC Live: Hardy vs Lytle in August 2011.

Nate Diaz told MMA Fight Corner last week that if he did get a title shot, he would hope to “dodge a bullet” and not have to fight Frankie Edgar who’s trained with Ricardo Almeida Jiu Jitsu.  Ricardo Almeida trained with, earned his black belt from, and was an assistant instructor with Renzo Gracie before opening his own academy in New Jersey.  Renzo and Cesar are cousins, and Diaz has trained with Cesar Gracie Jiu Jitsu throughout his career.

Johny Hendricks will also be awarded a title shot with a win, but Josh Koscheck won’t, according to Dana.  The path to earning a shot at the welterweight title still seems like a puzzle.  With the UFC welterweight champ, Georges St. Pierre, still out of the picture until a possible late 2012 return, there was the possibility of a rematch between Nick Diaz and Carlos Condit for the UFC’s interim welterweight title.  But since Nick Diaz is still facing a temporary suspension and lawsuit vs the Nevada State Athletic Commission, there remains the question of whether or not Condit will fight while he holds the interim title.  If Condit does not fight while holding the interim title, Hendricks will have to wait for Condit to fight Georges St. Pierre to determine who he will get to challenge in the Octagon.

 

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